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A Step-By-Step Guide To Composing A Research Paper Table Of Contents

A research paper table of content entails all the information you have encrypted in your paper. You need to enclose everything ranging from your introduction to the acknowledgement section. Table of Content is the first section of your thesis, it should be exposed with a clear outline so that all the steps can be precisely stated. Apart from the chapter, all headings and sub-headings should be reflected in this part. It will reveal your organizational skills. This section offers easy accessibility to the readers and hence you must check twice before submitting the thesis to confirm the outline.

  1. As you begin writing your table of content, the first page should be a heading with a title- “Table of Content”. The words should be written in capitalized form.
  2. Specify number to each chapter and offer it a heading. Under the chapter, specify all the sub-headings. Ensure that each chapter and the subchapter are written along with their page numbers.
  3. All the subheadings should be indented with their heading levels.
  4. The chapter numbers are written in Roman numerals. Subsequently the sub- chapters are written in Arabic numerals. However, it is not any rule, but is usually preferred by the professors.
  5. Dot leaders are used to indicate the page numbers so that headings and subheadings can be easily aligned. The page numbers are always aligned on the right hand side.


  • Table of Content....................................1
  • Chapter 1- Introduction.........................3
    • 1.1 Thesis Statement.............................3
    • 1.2 Objective of conducting the study...3
    • 1.3 Hypothesis.......................................4
  1. It is obligatory that chapters and the sub chapters are included in the table of content.
  2. Remember, all the headings written in the table of content are exactly similar as written in the text. They should be similar in terms of font size, font style, format etc.
  3. The sections of thesis - table of content varies based on different disciplines and based on the requirements of intuitions, however the essential ones remain the same like-
    • Tables
    • Figures
    • Abbreviation column.(It is optional)

Apart from a generalized introduction, the table of content section also focuses on –

  1. Materials and methodology section: These are termed as research framework chapter. Description of the research methods and all the materials used are described here.
  2. Chapters of thesis: The number of chapters may vary based on the number of questions posed in introduction. It usually has 5 or less than 5 chapters. The number of chapter may vary between 10-30 pages.
  3. Discussion of the results: Results is recorded based on the investigation.
  4. Conclusion: Result is interpreted based on logical summary.
  5. References: It includes the list of Bibliography where only cited resources are included.
  6. Appendices: Figures, tables, images, maps etc are included in this section.